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Stock Market Today: Dow ends higher as dip-buyers emerge into close

Published 2024-02-20, 07:42 p/m
Updated 2024-02-21, 04:06 p/m
© Reuters. The Dow closed higher Wednesday, amid dip-buying into the close as investors shrugged the  release of the minutes of the Federal Reserve's January meeting showing members were concerned about cutting interest rates too soon. 

At 16:00 ET (21:00 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 47 points, or 0.1%, the S&P 500 index rose 0.1% and the NASDAQ Composite fell 0.3%, with the latter down more than 1% intraday. 

Fed minutes show no urgency among members to back rate cuts

Federal Reserve policymakers signaled no urgency to pivot to rate cuts as concerns of "upside risks" to inflation begin to emerge, according to the minutes of the Federal Reserve’s Jan.30-31 meeting released Wednesday.

In a further sign that the Fed isn't leaning toward a sooner rate cut, the minutes showed that Fed members had expressed "uncertainty associated with how long a restrictive monetary policy stance would need to be maintained." 

Treasury yields remained near session highs following the release of the minutes, with the rate-sensitive 2-year Treasury yield up 4 basis points to 4.655%. 

Nvidia spurs tech losses amid pre-earnings jitters; Palo Alto plummets after guidance cut

Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA) closed 2% lower, though that was well above session lows as jitters persist ahead of the the chipmaking heavyweight quarterly results.

The company is expected to clock EPS of $4.58 on a revenue of $20.37 billion - both up substantially from the same period a year ago. 

But doubts over Nvidia’s outlook and stretched price-to-earnings ratio have spurred some profit-taking in the chipmaker, which had raced to record highs in recent sessions. 

Palo Alto Networks (NASDAQ:PANW) fell more than 28% after cutting its full-year guidance as the cybersecurity company changed its strategy by increasing free product offers -- expected to weigh on billings growth for 12-to-18 months -- to customers in the hope of accelerating adoption of its offerings.    

Teledoc, SolarEdge take hit on weaker outlook; Wingstop weaker revenue growth offsets Q4 earnings beat

Teladoc (NYSE:TDOC) slumped 24% on disappointing first-quarter guidance as the on-line health-care company as its BetterHelp therapy platform's lower marketing spending yields are expected to continue in the months ahead.

SolarEdge Technologies, meanwhile, (NASDAQ:SEDG) fell 12% on weak first-quarter revenue guidance as inventory overhan is expected to continue to weigh on margins. The solar company's management attempted to tout potential drivers to boost margin, Oppenheimer said in note, but "we believe the diversity of products and end-markets SEDG serves points to the potential for an uneven recovery."

Wingstop (NASDAQ:WING) fell more than 4% as restaurant chain's better-than-expected fourth-quarter earnings were overshadowed by fourth-straight quarterly revenue decline. 

Amazon in, Walgreen Boosts Alliance out of Dow Jones Industrial Average Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) was up 1% as the e-commerce giant is set to replace Walgreen Boosts Alliance in the Dow Jones Industrial Average index before markets open on Feb. 26. The move was triggered by Walmart’s decision to do a 3-to-1 stock split, which will cut its weighing in the index.

Amazon's weight will be 17, out of the 30 stocks in the index, while Walmart (NYSE:WMT) will drop to 26 from 17. 

Energy leads stocks higher

Energy stocks led the broader market higher, as oil prices cut losses to settle higher amid ongoing support from elevated geopolitical tensions in the Middle East that threaten to disrupt supplies. 

EQT Corporation (NYSE:EQT), Coterra Energy Inc (NYSE:CTRA), ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP) were among the biggest gainers in the energy sector.

(Peter Nurse, Ambar Warrick contributed to this article.)

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